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Best One-Step Hair Dryers

Updated August 2023
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Best of the Best
Dyson AirWrap Multi-styler
AirWrap Multi-styler
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Most Versatile
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We found the Dyson Airwrap helped keep our hair healthy due to its variety of heat-controlling features.


Comes with multiple attachments that make it easier to both dry and style simultaneously. We really love how it controls temperature to ensure that the high heat doesn't damage your hair during use. Has an air-speed setting to help control potential frizz. Ideal for longer hairstyles.


Due to the barrel being a bit long, we wouldn't recommend purchasing if you like to keep your hair on the shorter side.

Best Bang for the Buck
Andis Ceramic Ionic Styler
Ceramic Ionic Styler
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Budget Friendly
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Good budget price makes the dryer a great replacement option.


The unique form factor makes the dryer more portable than comparable models. Provides the same quality of hair drying as more expensive options. Comes with different attachments for styling. Helps reduce frizz during use. Multiple heat options.


Included attachments are substandard compared to more expensive models.

Panasonic Nanoe Hair Dryer
Nanoe Hair Dryer
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Versatile Convenience
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The overall best styling hair dryer that delivers a good amount of versatility.


Uses a standard hair dryer base. Has the same speeds and heat settings as other traditional options. Adds moisture while drying hair. Comes with high-quality styling attachments, including a flexible, long-toothed circular brush for use with wavy and curly hairstyles.


Lacks some power on the higher speed settings.

Conair Styler
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Most Portable
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A compact one-step hair dryer that's great for travel and other portable uses.


Two speed and heat settings. Comes with 3 plastic attachments that are easy to fasten to the dryer in just a couple seconds. Heat and speed settings are easy to access on the handle. Extremely lightweight for portable travel.


Teeth on the comb can start to warp and bend under high heat.

Revlon One-Step Volumizer PLUS 2.0
One-Step Volumizer Plus 2.0
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Improved Edition
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We found this brush capable of producing a professional look at home in our user testing.


Slimmer and easier to hold compared to older models. Offers multiple heat settings. Includes cool setting to lock in the style. Achieves salon-style blowout in a reasonable amount of time. Fairly simple to clean and maintain.


Our tester found the unit a bit loud and had trouble figuring out how to lock and unlock the brush head.

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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. About BestReviews  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.About BestReviews 

We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

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Buying guide for Best one-step hair dryers

Achieving perfectly styled hair can be quite the process. After you’ve washed your hair, you still have to dry and curl, wave, or straighten it. When you need to get out the door in a hurry, you may not have time for each step. Enter the one-step hair dryer. It can simplify your styling and save you precious time in the morning.

As the name implies, a one-step hair dryer lets you dry and style your hair at the same time. Depending on the hair dryer, you can smooth your hair, define its natural texture, or add soft waves or curls, and finish your coif in half the time. A one-step dryer is ideal for thick, coarse, or curly hair that takes a long time to dry and style.

If you want to make sure you always have a good hair day, it all comes down to choosing the right one-step hair dryer. If all the options have you confused, our guide has the tips you need to find the right one-step hair dryer for your styling routine. Take a look at our favorites to make your shopping even easier.

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Brush-style one-step hair dryers usually have nylon bristles, which hold up well in heat and provide a solid grip on your hair.

Key considerations


One-step hair dryers are available in two main types: those that resemble traditional hair dryers but include attachments and those that resemble hair brushes.

Traditional style: The first type is the easiest to get used to because it functions exactly like a traditional hair dryer but with attachments. Most models include diffuser, concentrator, brush, and comb attachments. This type works best if you have naturally curly or wavy hair because the diffuser lets you dry and define your natural texture in one step. But even using the comb or brush attachment, it can be more difficult to curl, straighten, or boost volume in your hair with this type of dryer.

Brush style: A one-step hair dryer that resembles a hair brush is more versatile. Some models are designed like a wide paddle brush, others like a round brush, and there are even some with multiple attachments that allow you to change the head. This type of one-step hair dryer emits heat to dry your hair while you style it with the brush head at the same time. You can smooth or straighten, curl, or add loosely defined waves to your hair. This type of one-step dryer works well for fine hair because you can easily add volume where needed.


Just as with a traditional hair dryer, flat iron, or curling iron, the materials used for a one-step dryer play a significant role in how it affects your hair. Ceramic and titanium models are best because these materials heat evenly and maintain a consistent temperature as you style your hair. This prevents heat damage and reduces the drying and styling time. These materials also cut down on frizz, so your hair has a smooth, shiny appearance.

One-step hair dryer features

Temperature settings

Three: Like any heated styling tool, a one-step hair dryer has multiple heat settings. Most models that resemble a traditional hair dryer have three general heat settings – low, medium, and high, so you don’t have precise control over the amount of heat that you’re using to dry and style your hair.

Variable: However, some brush-style one-step dryers offer variable temperature controls, in 5° or 10° intervals, so you can choose a more precise temperature for drying and styling your hair. Pay attention to the temperature range for these hair dryers. Thicker, coarser hair usually requires higher temperatures for drying and styling, but most users don’t need a dryer that can reach more than 400°F.

Speed settings

Some one-step dryers offer multiple settings to control the speed of the hot air blowing on your hair. Two speeds, low and high, are most common, but you can find models that offer three speed settings.

Brush-style one-step dryers usually don’t offer multiple speed settings because they’re intended more as styling tools than drying tools. The hot air blows much more gently to provide more control when styling your hair.

Blowing modes

Some one-step dryers provide multiple blowing modes, such as hot, warm, and cool, to help you achieve different effects with your hair. The dryer set on the hot mode can effectively dry your hair. Use the warm mode to set curls, waves, or smoothness in place. Use the cool mode to seal each hair’s cuticle, set your style, and help boost the shine.

Ionic technology

Some one-step hair dryers are equipped with ionic technology to help limit heat damage and give your hair a smoother appearance. Hair gets frizzy because of positive ions in the follicles, and a dryer with ionic technology emits negative ions as a countermeasure. This seals your hair’s cuticle to help it look smooth and shiny, reducing frizz and preventing further damage to your locks.

One-step hair dryer prices

One-step hair dryers vary in price based on the type and the features offered. Most models cost between $14 and $125.


The most affordable one-step hair dryers, costing between $14 and $32, tend to be brush-style dryers with fixed temperature settings and no control over the speed. These work best if you simply want a tool that can dry and smooth your hair.


Most of these are also brush-style one-step hair dryers, but they may have variable temperature controls and multiple head attachments for increased versatility. These work well for drying, smoothing, curling, and straightening your hair and range from $32 to $60.


The most expensive one-step hair dryers are either traditional hair dryer models or brush-style dryers with multiple attachments, variable temperature and speed controls, and ionic technology. These work well if you want to dry, smooth, curl, and straighten fine or damaged hair and typically cost between $60 and $125.

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Did you know?
If you travel abroad, opt for a one-step hair dryer with dual voltage because it can accept both 110-120V and 220-240V.


  • Treat your hair with a heat protectant before using a one-step hair dryer. Do this before using any heated styling tool.
  • Check the instructions. Some brush-style one-step hair dryers require time to warm up. Read the manufacturer's instructions carefully to see if you need to wait or can use your dryer right away.
  • Use the right temperature. For one-step hair dryers with three fixed temperature settings, set the dryer to low for fine or thin hair.  If you have normal hair, the medium setting is usually your best bet. For thick or coarse hair, opt for the high setting.
  • Dry your hair in sections. If you plan to add curls, waves, or volume with a one-step hair dryer, it’s best to section off your hair before you begin.
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Reduce your drying time even further by first blotting your hair well with a towel before using your one-step dryer.


Q. How should I clean a one-step hair dryer?

A. If you opt for a traditional hair dryer model, remove the cap from the back of the dryer to expose its filter. Use a damp cloth or small brush to gently remove any dust, dirt, and other debris. Allow the filter to fully dry and then replace the cap.

If you have a brush-style dryer, wipe down the exterior, including the bristles, with a damp cloth. Some models may have a filter that you can remove and clean with the cloth as well. Dry the filter and replace it on the dryer before the next use.

Q. What type of one-step hair dryer is best if I want curls and waves?

A. If you want to dry your hair and add curls or waves at the same time, a round brush-style one-step dryer is your best bet. Just wind your hair around the barrel as you would with a traditional curling iron and it will dry your hair and add texture simultaneously.

Q. Do one-step hair dryers offer warranty protection?

A. Most one-step hair dryers include some type of warranty. Most budget-friendly models offer just one year of protection, while higher-end dryers may provide up to three or four years. The warranty for most dryers only covers problems that result from issues in manufacturing or materials. It typically won’t cover damage that results from an accident or misuse.

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